Hearty Pancakes with Quaker

What’s for breakfast?

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day because it provides the body and brain with fuel after an overnight fast. But how many of us actually take pride in preparing a hearty breakfast with the necessary nutrients so that our body can perform in its maximum capacity?

I admit I often resort to the easy way out by having store-bought bread and at times, when I’m a bit more hardworking, would bake my own bread for the family and provide soy milk for the kids. It’s simple but perhaps, lacking in something.

I realised breakfast doesn’t have to be boring, having to eat the same kind of food every other day (my kids have started complaining). It can be fun, colourful, nutritious and allows for a great time of bonding. The following is a recipe for Oatmeal Pancakes and they are not just good for breakfast, they are awesome for every meal! It’s the Favourite Oatmeal Pancakes from Quaker! Let me show you how easy these pancakes are made.

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Some preparation work. I thought it helps that the table is set up for the next day and that the ingredients are all prepared. Once the kids are at the table, it’s BUSY TIME! Invite the kids to help out to make the pancakes. They will love it!

Oatmeal Pancakes | Ingredients

:: 1-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
:: 1/2 cup Quaker® Oats (quick or old fashioned, uncooked)
:: 2 teaspoons baking powder
:: 1/4 teaspoon salt (optional)
:: 1-1/4 cups full cream milk
:: 1 egg, lightly beaten
:: 1 tablespoon vegetable oil

Cooking Instructions

:: In large bowl, combine flour, oats, baking powder and salt. Mix well.

:: In a separate medium bowl, combine milk, egg and oil. Blend well.

:: Add liquid ingredients to dry ingredients all at once. Stir just until dry ingredients are moistened and do not overmix. So you can cook the pancake as it is. Lightly grease a skillet or a hot plate. For each pancake, pour 1/4 cup of the batter into the hot skillet or hotplate. Turn when the top is covered with bubbles and the edge looks cooked. Turn only once.

We like our pancakes more when we topped up with honey and fruits. Alternatively, we could add in fruits or chocolate chips to stir into the batter before cooking. The taste is richer with the add-ins. It can be quite a substantial meal and definitely a more balanced one with the addition of the fruits. I like it that these pancakes turned out a little fluffier than our usual flat pancakes. ;P

So yup, the pancakes are a good alternative to the usual bread that we have for our breakfast. These pancakes are good for tea-time too or any meal, for that matter. The kids love to help out with the preparation of the food and you could get them to work their motor skills for sure. The little boy helped to mash up the banana that is to be stirred into the batter and the girl helped with most of the steps in making the batter. I…just need to instruct and demo.

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Do try the healthier and more substantial version of the pancakes with Quaker Oatmeal!

As you have already known, the Eat, Drink, Shop Healthy challenge is back! This year, it guarantees sure-win prizes for everyone. Choose healthier options and scan the QR code on the products to earn Healthpoints and unlock sure-win rewards like F&B and shopping vouchers.

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By purchasing Quaker’s range of Healthier Choice Symbol (HCS) certified products, it will earn you sure-win rewards in Health Promotion Board’s Eat, Drink, Shop Healthy Challenge from now till 26 October 2018.

Quaker Healthier Choice Symbol certified products include:
1. Quaker Instant Oatmeal
2. Quaker Quick Cook Oatmeal
3. Quaker Whole Rolled Oats
4. Quaker 3-in-1 Oat Cereal Drink (all 6 flavours – Original, Vanilla, Berry, Chocolate, Matcha and Mocha)

What you need to do: Download the Healthy 365 app, purchase any Quaker HCS certified products from any participating outlets to receive a QR code on the receipt or ticket. Scan this QR code using the Healthy 365 app to earn Healthpoints and redeem rewards.

Find out more at http://gethealthy.sg/eatdrinkshop

Have fun!

This post is brought to you in collaboration with Quaker Singapore. All opinions are my own.

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Dan learns Chinese

img_9897Let’s talk about this boy. Two weeks shy of 3YO, he’s a bubbly, opinionated young boy. Learnt language more from the sister and he really could talk. It’s been a joy listening to him in a conversation and the things he speak could surprise you.

We speak to him mostly in English, even though I started out with the One Parent, One Language policy with Faith. The policy didn’t quite work well with Dan because I find myself speaking to her more in English as she grows older. A lot of my instruction is in English and Mandarin has taken a backseat.

Before he entered preschool, Dan’s knowledge of Chinese was probably little. Thankfully, he learnt Chinese through 儿歌 in school and came back singing those songs which could be hilarious. His pronunciation is funny, heavily accented in an English manner, if you understand what I mean.

I always wondered if the boy was ready to learn some Chinese characters but held back teaching him because I think he wasn’t ready. Don’t waste the effort and time. What if he resists it? It wasn’t until I received the Chinese strokes sensory play kit and started to get the kids to work on it that I realised that the boy was curious and all ready to learn.

The boy was working on the play dough and repeating the strokes after me as I taught him. So maybe it’s time to bring out the Sage Chinese books! He seemed very receptive to learning Chinese.

I started the older girl on this series of Chinese books for our home Chinese curriculum. It is easy to teach and builds confidence in the kids when they find that they could read the characters and sentences. Naturally, because of the success with Faith, I tried it out on Daniel, with little to no expectation.

Surprisingly, he took well to it. We started on the second week of August and the journey has been rather delightful. There were, of course, times when he didn’t want to learn but that’s all right. We would skip that day of Chinese learning if he wasn’t up to it. We read and review the characters every day, twice each day, and such a routine was set up very quickly.

I am a bit contemplative about sending him for Chinese enrichment class. The sister went for one since N2 (the year she was 4YO) and I must say the classes have done her much good. With Dan, I am a bit reluctant simply because logistically, it can be rather complicated … and tiring for this mom. However, we really do need the environment for language learning. Hmmm…

I guess, for now,  I would work with him using the Sage books and start reading Chinese books to him, on top of speaking more to him in Mandarin.

Above is the book that I’m referring to in this post. It can be bought from the local Popular bookstore. There are a total of 5 levels but I’m uncertain if level 1 is still available. The flash cards were given by friends and relatives but the last box of cards (yellow packaging) can be bought Popular too! 😀

Bee Choo Ladies Hair Treatment

[Review]

Scalp problems. Anyone?

I have. All along. I have oily scalp since a long time back and at one stage, was troubled by dandruff. The condition wasn’t grave but it did make me uncomfortable. After childbirth, another problem arose – loss of hair – and then as one ages, you can expect strands of gray hair appearing. ;(

The common solution is to make a trip to the salon and have our hair chemically treated and then build the scalp back to health through the various scalp treatments recommended by the salon. So, I’ve been doing that all along until I couldn’t find time to do that consistently. Because, kids.

In more recent months, the main problems that I faced were the loss of hair and the frequency of the appearance of the gray hair. It can get rather depressing and thankfully, Bee Choo Ladies contacted me to try their services. The timing couldn’t be more apt. The one-week September holiday was approaching and I could find time to try their treatment.

Bee Choo Ladies is located at 5 Pahang Street and this outlet is exclusively for women only. It is a recognised household brand name and has been established since 2000. I have to confess that I didn’t know about Bee Choo Ladies prior to being contacted because treating my scalp problem isn’t a BIG issue until recently. So I made my way down to the hair treatment salon, with great anticipation, no less. I was told I could have my hair scan done to access the condition of my scalp. *gulp*

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My appointment was at 10am on a weekday and it wasn’t crowded. I was told to avoid peak hours (weekdays after 5pm and weekends) so that I don’t have to wait. As promised, I was given a scan of my scalp to assess my condition.

Analysis: Oil clog, oily scalp, dandruff, dry ends with some gray hair. In certain areas, there were patches of redness, which is a result of a sensitive scalp. It’s not surprising but the pictures were pretty scary.

To clear the oil clog, ginger wine/ hair tonic was massaged into my scalp (to treat my sensitive scalp too) before the application of the herbal paste. The hair was given a 45-minute of steaming before the rinsing off of the herbal paste, scalp massage and the conditioning of the hair. So, in all, it would take about slightly more than 1 and a half hour in this intimate and cozy salon.

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This is the scan after the second treatment. Definitely much cleaner (it has to be!) and if you could see the brown coating, it’s the effect of the herbal paste treatment. The herbal paste contains a natural copper dye which dyes white hair to the roots without damaging the scalp. It’s a more natural option than the chemical ones that we go through at the salon. That being said, I have no intention of colouring my hair (chemically) any time soon so this option is fine with me. I was told by some of my friends (who frequent Bee Choo Origins) that going through this would affect the colour of their hair dye so you might want to check with them if there is a colourless herbal treatment before you go ahead with this process.

Let me share my honest thoughts. I like this treatment and enjoyed the 1.5 hours I spent in Bee Choo Ladies. I’m saying this not because I was there to do a sponsored review but I’m convinced that the treatment is beneficial to my scalp and therefore my hair and I will return as a paying customer. The therapist who tended to me patiently explained the causes of my scalp problem and educated me on how I should treat my scalp at home. There was no pressure to get me to return but she had the confidence that customers who find this treatment to be helpful would use the service again. True that. Okay, the massage won me over too and I had a very relaxing time at Bee Choo Ladies.

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Reasonable price. I’m doing a comparison here since I have done hair treatment at other hair salons. I pay a fraction of the price at Bee Choo Ladies and naturally, I’m a happy customer since it’s reasonably priced and effective. The price for the treatment varies according to the length of the hair and the price list is available on the website.

Hair products and and tonics are also available at Bee Choo Ladies. I was recommended the Purity Removed Hair Shampoo and the Japan Scalp Tonic based on the condition of my scalp and have been faithfully using them. 🙂 I love the tonic a lot! See below for what it does!

A mild, gentle scalp lotion formulated with herbal nutrients essential for hair vitality and hair texture improvement. It provides nutrients to the scalp which helps strengthen, relieves itching, control sebaceous excretion and improves follicular health, soothing and prevent dandruff.

It would be three or four weeks later (after the last session) that I would visit them again.  Thus far, my hair condition has been well, not dry. Scalp is less itchy too! And hopefully, with consistent treatment, the issue of hair loss can be addressed. I’m sure it will!

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You can find out more about Bee Choo Ladies via their website and outlets are available in Thailand too! Check out their website!

Disclosure: I was invited for two sessions of the scalp treatment and I brought home the shampoo and hair tonic mentioned in the post for the purpose of this review. No other monetary compensations are involved. All opinions are mine.